Tuesday, March 12, 2019

'We become fully conscious of what we are able to express to someone else'. Group Work in a Hostel for Young Humans.

A group gathered around a pile of sandwiches at lunchtime-ish. 
After the consumption washed down with mugs of tea - always quick when breakfast has been missed - 
I kicked the group off from the informal chat into a leader led process which they are used to.

I handed out a paper which said that a child from birth to age five gets 478 negative messages a day.
"Stop that."
"You little ..........!"
The paper had a list.
I spent very little time with that but moved on quickly to -
I asked everyone if they saw a glass half empty or half full. 

I went around the group and everyone commented. 
All gave sincere reflection to the question and a large percentage of the eleven present spoke in the negative.

Introducing the session very informally - 

I suggested we look at the issue of 'positives and negatives'.
The next step was a try with something never attempted with this community before. 

Everyone was given a slip and asked to write their own name on it and into my cap it went. 

Mine too.
The draw resulted in all having a name which was not their own. 

My plea then was for each to say something positive about that person. 

Even if they had never met before - a reality. 
It was fantastic. 

Everyone did it even if some struggled and had to be helped/encouraged by the group members. 

The brother to his sister was the slowest response. 
A real struggle. 

Also a 'first time' member of the group with a total strangers name in his hand. 

He did it. 

It was an affirmation communicated well about her clothing.
He did it.
I felt good to see and hear the words stumble out. 

Then I moved in with some other questions;
1 Do you remember positives or negatives mostly from you life experiences?
2 Do you normally speak mostly positive or negative?
3 Do you think positive or negative?
4 What are the feelings when you get a positive or negative?
They did it.
We did it!

Now we are talking about humans in the group who have met some pretty harsh experiences of;
- being rejected as a child
- seeing a friend stabbed to death
- abuse
- mental health issues
- alcoholism
- drug misuse
- and multiple issues for some.

Not only did they say that the negatives in their lives have an impact now, they said what they were - owned them and not pretending and hiding behind a mask.
Faces stilled. 
You know how sometimes the skin becomes drawn and passive - it is because the interior human is being disturbed and comforted at the same time.
Disturbed through the recall of life experiences.
Comforted by the support of the group - the realisation that they are not alone - and the first time facing of reality as it was..... and maybe is.
It was fantastic and powerful.

The session moved to close with a reaffirming of the objective which had been floated at the start.
1 Thinking and practising being positive.
2 Considering our reality in our daily lives. 

What do we do by habit?
3 Choosing to go down the positive route - a strategy for a new life.

I floated, lastly - these four life positions - soul positions - psychological positions;

1 I am not ok ................ you are not ok
2 I am not ok ................ you are ok
3 I am ok ...................... you are not ok
4 I'm ok ........................ you're ok

..... and they said which they were ..... 

because they had become aware of themselves ................ and to tell it ..... 

'how they were' was important .

........ I hope you can position yourself 

1 2 3 or 4 ............. ?

The other groups I lead are very different - 

and never the same people.
Different objectives, styles, tools.
......... and a stumbling to get close 
and be
and become .......... BECOMING ......